Sunday 24 March 2019

Ger to provide 'Friendship Care' in homes

Founder of Friendship Care, Ger Dwyer
Founder of Friendship Care, Ger Dwyer

A Swords woman has launched a new business aimed at providing a social outlet for those living in nursing homes.

Local woman, Ger Dwyer has just launched a new business called Friendship Care to tackle a problem revealed in recent research, that says older people think that once they enter a nursing home, their normal life is over.

Ger says her new service will allow residents of Nursing Homes or the Older Person living in the community to still partake in life outside the Home.

She said the service helps remove the barrier that their social life is over because of their age or health complications.

Latest Research reveals that Older People think once they enter a Nursing Home their normal life is over, according to Ger.

She said that a major research study analysing, for the first time, the lived experiences of Irish Nursing Home residents was published in September 2017.

The Research stated: 'The concept of providing homely care within the nursing home sector is compounded by the unfair ageism and stigma that prevails around nursing home care.

'These are exacerbated by the belief that admission to a nursing home is viewed as the end phase of an older person's life trajectory.'

In research, Ger found that the top problems facing people included having family members who live far away or who have their own family and commitments sometimes feel pressure and guilt.

She also found that people who receive care can feel lonely and sometimes need a friend too, a companion to accompany them on outings, socially or for medical reasons.

And that is where Ger comes in. She explained: 'There comes a time in each of our lives when we or our loved ones need a friend for a simple chat or to accompany them to social outings and hospital visits. It is for people to know that there are resources, such as Friendship Care out there.

'It is about taking the pressure off families and enabling older people live a vibrant and full life at any age.'

Friendship Care will provide social visits and accompaniment on social outings outside the nursing home and Ger pointed to other resources available to aid in building a social life for those living in nursing homes.

She said that Age Action promotes awareness of the older person's needs, while organisations like Men's Shed and Senior Citizens Clubs can provide a valuable social outlet for the older person and ALONE provides a service for those suffering from loneliness.

She said Friendship Care fits into the sector by providing 'a personal and tailored source for assistance to older or dependent persons living in nursing homes and in the community'.

Ger said she loves working with older people and loves to listen to them and their stories from the past and to help them feel happy. She says it is a privilege to have them in our lives

See the 'Friendship Care' Facebook for more information and contact details for Ger.

Fingal Independent